Thursday, April 16, 2009

Nice work if you can get it

As the political class hyperventilates about the bonuses paid to Wall Street operatives, our First Couple has reported a bit more than $2.7 million in income for 2008, on which they paid a bit more than $855,000 in taxes, for an effective tax rate of 31 percent. Wouldn't it be nice if the astonishing riches that accompany political success in America were treated to the same populist outrage as those AIG bonuses? Perhaps a 90 percent clawback rate on Obama's income over $250,000 would be too harsh, but he could at the very least make a contribution to ameliorate the national debt that he is expanding so wildly--say on the level of the 45 percent that he thinks fair for wealthy folks on their deadbeds, or even at the roughly 40 percent that he wants to impose on 'folks like me'.

But perhaps Mr Obama is feeling pinched. After all, he took home $4.1 million in 2007, when he wasn't running full-time for president. Blue skies! -- Dan Ford

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